Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 188, Issue 1, pp 45–51 | Cite as

Improved Magnesium Levels in Morbidly Obese Diabetic and Non-diabetic Patients After Modest Weight Loss

  • Solveig Meyer MikalsenEmail author
  • Anne-Lise Bjørke-Monsen
  • Jon Elling Whist
  • Jan Aaseth


Serum magnesium (Mg) is reported to be reduced in individuals with obesity, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus and has been suggested as a marker for metabolic syndrome. We have studied changes in serum Mg concentrations in a group of obese patients (n = 92) with and without diabetes mellitus after weight loss induced by dieting and bariatric surgery. At inclusion, 11% (10/92) of the population had severe Mg deficiency (< 0.75 mmol/L) and median serum Mg was lower in diabetic (n = 20) compared to non-diabetic (n = 72) patients (p = 0.002). A weight loss of 10 kg after 8 weeks of lifestyle interventions was accompanied by increased serum Mg of about 5% in both diabetic and non-diabetic patients. Serum Mg remained stable thereafter in the non-diabetic patients, while it continued to increase in the diabetic patients after bariatric surgery. Six months after bariatric surgery, there was no significant difference in serum Mg concentration between the groups (p = 0.08). The optimal range of circulating Mg concentration is not known, but as even small increments in serum Mg are reported to lower the risk of cardiovascular and ischemic heart disease, our results are interesting in a public health perspective.


Bariatric surgery Diabetes mellitus Magnesium Metabolic syndrome Obesity Weight loss 



We thank all participants for their willingness to participate in the study and the laboratory staff at Innlandet Hospital Trust, Norway, for perfoming the biochemical analyses.

Author Contributions

S Meyer Mikalsen and A-L Bjørke-Monsen analyzed the data and wrote the paper, J.E. Whist revised the paper, and J Aaseth wrote the paper. All authors approved the final version.


The study was supported by grants from Innlandet Hospital Trust, Norway.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Ethical approval of the protocol was obtained by the Regional Committee for Medical and Health Research Ethics (REK), Region South-East, Norway, ref. number 2012/1394. The study was conducted in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki, and written informed consent was obtained from all patients before enrolment.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Medical BiochemistryInnlandet Hospital TrustLillehammerNorway
  2. 2.Laboratory of Clinical BiochemistryHaukeland University HospitalBergenNorway
  3. 3.Department of Clinical ScienceUniversity of BergenBergenNorway
  4. 4.Department of ResearchInnlandet Hospital TrustBrumunddalNorway
  5. 5.Inland Norway University of Applied SciencesElverumNorway

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